Our local contact Patrick (a college friend of Alison’s) gave us a quick tour of the neighborhood this morning before he headed to work. He explained many things about how the neighborhood (the French Concession in central Shanghai) is put together socially and architecturally, but most importantly he found us breakfast at some of the little stalls here and there along the street.
First he showed us the bao (pronounced “bow” as in the front of a ship) vendor who had four kinds of bao (sesame paste, meat, bitter greens, and radish) plus sticky rice shumei (a kind of dumpling). We got one of each of those, although they were out of the radish bao for 4.50 yuan. Next door they were selling one of Patrick’s favorite morning dishes: tofu in hot sauce. We got a bowl of that for 1.50 yuan.
We ate the dumplings as we continued our walking tour, then we took the tofu (less street friendly) back to the apartment. It was *fantastic*! And at 6 yuan total for both our breakfasts, we had not yet spent $1 for food today…!
The apartment is very nice, in a modern apartment building just off the “Fifth Ave.” of Shanghai (Huaihai Middle Rd.), but set back so it’s not too noisy.
It’s raining lightly today, but we planned to walk as much of the city as possible, and then learn how to use the subway.